A petition was filed in a court in Muzaffarpur district in Bihar on Saturday against a group of 49 intellectuals who wrote a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi against mob lynchings, PTI reported. Petitioner Sudhir Kumar Ojha filed the plea under various sections of the Indian Penal Code, relating to sedition, imputations and assertions prejudicial to national integration, and hurting religious feelings.

The petitioner also named actor Kangana Ranaut, directors Madhur Bhandarkar and Vivek Agnihotri, as “witnesses” in the case. Ranaut, Bhandarkar and Agnihotri, along with 59 other eminent personalities, had responded to the letter by alleging that it was a conspiracy against the country.

Ojha alleged that the 49 signatories to the original letter had, by their act, “tarnished the image of the country and undermining the impressive performance of the prime minister”, and as well as “supporting secessionist tendencies”. The matter is likely to come up for hearing on August 3.

The 49 intellectuals had also said that “Jai Shri Ram”, a religious slogan, had become a war cry against minorities. However, the 62 personalities who wrote a counter-statement alleged that the signatories to the letter were guilty of “selective outrage and false narrative”.